HoopDirt.com’s Daily News from the college basketball coaching world…
- Pitt head coach Kevin Stallings was not happy with Louisville fans last night. Towards the end of the Panthers blow out loss last night, Stallings can be heard saying to someone in the crowd “at least we didn’t pay our guys $100,000.” He then responded to something the fan said by repeating “We didn’t pay our guys 100 grand though.” Stallings claimed afterwards that he was just defending his players who had been heckled all night. The audio of Stallings from WHAS11’s Whitney Harding can be found HERE.
- A tough go for Tubby Smith and his young Memphis Tigers this season. After a humiliating 82-48 loss at Cincinnati on Sunday, Memphis fans started an online petition to fire the veteran head coach. Smith, who has 585 wins in his 26+ years as a head coach has been getting killed by the Memphis media, including CBSSports.com’s Gary Parrish for the better part of a year now (How Tubby Smith made a gigantic mess of Memphis’ program in just one year). It’s going to be interesting to see how this one plays out…
- Former Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl got his first win in Knoxville since taking over Auburn’s program in 2014 as his Tigers downed the 23rd ranked Vols 94-84. Pearl, who led Tennessee to six straight NCAA Tournament appearances from 2006-11, now has 13-1 Auburn on an 11-game winning streak. Hear his thoughts on what it meant to return to Knoxville (and win) HERE.
- The Infinity Coaches Charity Challenge started this week. You can vote for you favorite coach or charity HERE. Over four rounds of voting, fans will whittle our field of 48 coaches down to a final four. The coach with the most votes after four rounds wins $100,000 for their charity. Each charity will receive money for every round their representative coach is voted through, with the minimum amount they receive increasing round by round. As of this morning, Florida head coach Mike White has a slim lead over Purdue’s Matt Painter, with Villanova’s Jay Wright mounting a charge.
- Some milestone victories over the past few days:
ᴏ Maryland head coach Mark Turgeon collected his 400th career victory. Turgeon is 400-230 (including 150 with the Terrapins), in a run that began at Jacksonville State in 1998, followed by stops at Wichita State and Texas A&M before his arrival at Maryland in 2011.
ᴏ Springfield College head coach Charlie Brock won his 300th game at the college with a 72-67 victory over #12 Wesleyan University. He now has 529 carer victories in his 37+ seasons as a head coach (Springfield, Trinity (TX), Drew, Gustavus Adolphus).
ᴏ Southeastern University (FL) head coach R-Jay Barsh picked up the 100th win of his career as SEU downed Amherst College 76-65. In his sixth season, Barsh is 100-68.
- Back on 12/29, HoopDirt.com mentioned that Lakehead University (Thunder Bay, Ontario), had released head coach Manny Furtado. They have now announced that Ryan Thomson will serve as the interim head coach for the remainder of the season. Thomson is a Lakehead alum who also worked for the NBA-G-League’s Maine Red Claws and the NBL of Canada’s Saint John Riptide as an assistant coach and director of player personnel. Full story can be found HERE.
- The HoopDirt.com Coach of the Week presented by Just Play Solutions winners were announced yesterday. The full list of winners from the DI, DII, DIII, NAIA, and JUCO levels can be found HERE. Nominations for next week’s award can be sent to: [email protected]